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Privacy Act & codes

The Government is currently in the process of making changes to the Privacy Act. 

The Minister of Justice, which is responsible for the proposed legislation, has indicated that a Bill amending the current Act is likely to be introduced to Parliament in 2017. 

When the new Bill goes before Parliament, it will be available to the public and anyone may make submissions when it goes before Parliament’s Justice and Electoral Select Committee. 

More information about the proposed changes to the Privacy Act can be found on the Ministry of Justice website.

The reform proposals include stronger powers for the Privacy Commissioner, mandatory reporting of privacy breaches, new offences and increased fines.

In particular, the reforms aim to encourage private and public sector agencies to identify risks and prevent incidents that could cause harm.

The law reform process is the culmination of many years of preparatory work by the Law Commission and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner.

Our latest recommendations - which are in the Privacy Commissioner's Section 26 report to the Minister of Justice in February 2017 - can be found here.

By way of background, the Privacy Commissioner first reviewed the Privacy Act in 1998.

In July 2011, the New Zealand Law Commission completed a privacy review that began in 2006. Through the links below you can access resources on the Privacy Commissioner's and Law Commission's reviews.

There has been considerable law reform activity overseas as well. We have provided links to some recent resources from Australia and elsewhere.

Follow the links to read more and to download resources: